Photography, Motherhood and Identity
11 Oct 2013 - 5 Jan 2014
Hanna Putz, Untitled, (LL1), 2012 © Hanna Putz
Hanna Putz Untitled (Nave 2), 2012 © Hanna Putz
Elinor Carucci, The First Week, 2004, © Elinor Carucci/INSTITUTE
Elinor Carucci, Feeding Emanuelle From a Plastic Bottle after I Stopped Breast-feeding Her, 2005 © Elinor Carucci/INSTITUTE
Ana Casas Broda, Kinderwunsch from the series Playroom, 2010 © Ana Casas Broda
Ana Casas Broda, Playroom IV from the series Playroom, 2010 © Ana Casas Broda
Annonciation 2, Helsinki 18 March 2009 (part 2 of a triptych) © Elina Brotherus
Annonciation 4, Bruxelles, 23 October 2010 © Elina Brotherus
Fred Hüning, Untitled (2 photographers), 2008 © Fred Hüning
Fred Hüning Untitled (Lake), 2011 © Fred Huning
Janine Antoni, Inhabit, 2009 © Janine Antoni
Janine Antoni, Lattice, 2009 © Janine Antoni
A home truth can be simply understood as a fact that is somehow discomforting to acknowledge or may cause embarrassment. The work in this show may do all of those things. The title is there to be taken literally, or ironically. The concept of truths in parenting and photography are there to be questioned.
The work in Home Truths: Photography, Motherhood and Identity aims to challenge long held stereotypes and sentimental views of motherhood. Set against a backdrop of the seemingly insatiable appetite for pictures of celebrity mums, streams of Instagram bumps and babies and a history of the Madonna motif in art history, the work here addresses changing conditions of power, gender, domesticity, the maternal body and familial relations. It is a critical space for the representation of mothers to exist aside from more reductive cultural assumptions of mothering.
As a theme often overlooked in contemporary art making, the work here is highly subjective, with a sense of seriousness and intense reflection. Much of the work also reflects contemporaneous impulses in photography to photograph everything, however seemingly inappropriate. Home Truths: Photography, Motherhood and Identity questions both the identity of the mother figure, but also the identity of photography at a time when the expectations and demands of both are in flux, and both subject and medium grapple for new meaning.
The exhibiting artists are Janine Antoni, Elina Brotherus, Elinor Carucci, Ana Casas Broda, Fred Hüning, Leigh Ledare, Katie Murray and Hanna Putz.
A companion exhibition Home Truths: Photography, Motherhood and Loss is showing at the Foundling Museum with works by Ann Fessler, Tierney Gearon, Miyako Ishiuchi and Annu Palakunnathu Matthew. The Foundling Museum
is located at 40 Brunswick Square, London WC1N 1AZ. Download a pdf map, with transport information.
Home Truths is curated by writer and curator Susan Bright.
Download our Exhibition Notes for Secondary School Teachers.
This exhibition contains work of a highly explicit sexual nature. Under 16s must be accompanied by a responsible adult.
A fully illustrated book, Home Truths: Photography & Motherhood, co-published by Art / Books in association with The Photographers’ Gallery, the Foundling Museum and Museum of Contemporary Photography at Columbia College Chicago, is available from the Gallery Bookshop priced £24.99.
In partnership with & supported by:
Austrian Cultural Foundation
The Home Truths Exhibition Circle
Michael Sprachmann, Fine Art Printing,